AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — A newly released state health plan calls Maine the ninth healthiest state, up from 16th in 2003.

The 2010-2012 State Health Plan released Wednesday by Gov. John Baldacci also ranks Maine sixth best in covering the uninsured, up from 19th in 2002. It says that health care costs still remain too high, but growth in premium costs for workplace insurance is lower than the national average.

The document proposes reducing health care costs by strengthening public health and prevention of health problems, finding ways to avoid unneeded hospitalizations and emergency room use, and finding ways to reward efficiency and prevention.

The health report is required by state law. The latest one is released as state officials work to implement national health reform.


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